Ligonier Valley Writers announce Winning Flash Fiction Stories

A teenage boy who is dying for a pet is allergic to fur,

but his parents refuse to let a reptile into the house. What will he do? 

To find out, read the first-prize story in Ligonier Valley Writers' 15th annual Flash Fiction Contest. 



First Place ($50 prize): "Drako"

by Heather Rath of Burlington, Ontario, Canada 


Second Place ($25 prize): "The Snake Was Always Just an Excuse"

by Greg Beatty of Bellingham, Washington

Third Place ($15 prize): "Coiled"

by Jessica Joy of Kent, United Kingdom

Honorable Mentions (in alphabetical order by author):

"Reed Snakes" by Jeffrey T. Duda of Latrobe, PA

"A Salvation of Dragons" by Larry Ivkovich of Coraopolis, PA

"Kindred Spirits" by Barbara Purbaugh of South Bend, Indiana

This year's topic is snakes and other reptiles. It inspired our winning authors to journey to the past and the future and bring back stories of heroes and villains, of magic and mayhem. The contest had an international flavor this year: The first-place winner is from Canada and the third-place winner from the United Kingdom.

All six of the winning authors will receive a complimentary one-year membership in Ligonier Valley Writers, a professional edit of their stories, publication at the LVW website, and a chance to perform their winning story aloud. The first, second, and third place winners will also receive cash prizes. 

Our celebrity judge this year was Damian Dressick, a much-published author of flash and other fiction who has also taught flash fiction writing at Pitt and other universities. Damian says the first-place story, “Drako,” is "a delightfully wicked little gem that enchants as it surprises."

Heather Rath, the author of “Drako,” said, “I’m entering your LVW contest with hope and a healthy dash of reptilian blood.”

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